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Sure Thing: k-os gives free show 

k-os w/Lioness Saturday, May 16 at the Cunard Centre, 961 Marginal, 8pm, free.

As many Haligonian concert-goers mentally divvy up their funds in anticipation of this summer’s Big Outdoor Concert offerings, it may be comforting to know that there’s at least one big show happening this week that won’t cost a thing. Rapper k-os is promoting his latest album, Yes!, with a cross-Canada string of shows that are, for all intents and purposes, free. At the end of the show, concertgoers have the option to give a “karma donation” that will also entitle them to copies of the new album, as well as a companion record of Yes! songs remixed by fans.

“With the karma tour, the fans will be able to react immediately to what they saw,” says k-os, on the phone from Vancouver. “They could give a hundred dollars or they could give nothing. The whole idea of rock ‘n’ roll, punk and hip-hop was about spontaneity and these ideas have been lost from music now. It becomes this boring thing. This tour is a great way to make things alive again.”

The remix project also helped bridged the gap between the rapper and his fans. k-os picked the top 10 remixed tracks out of hundreds over two days. “Sometimes it was agony,” he says. “Then there would be a moment where you’d hear someone doing something really creative, and it was the best---everyone from 16-year-old kids from Burnaby to a 54-year-old black man from New Orleans, giving his funked-out version of my track.”

For the most part, the rapper doesn’t seem too concerned about whether people will feel inspired to give or not. “We can’t make a forecast of what a donation is, so it will be interesting to see what happens afterwards,” he says. “It’s weird---I’m not motivated by the money as much as I just want to blow people’s minds.”

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